Judge ordered clerk to do son’s homework, complaint says
TRENTON — A North Jersey judge made a member of her staff take care of personal business including completing her son's homework, according to a complaint.
The state Supreme Court's Advisory Committee on Judicial Conduct issued an ethics complaint against Superior Court Judge Deborah Gross-Quatrone, claiming she also ordered a new law clerk to start work before her official start date without compensation.
Gross-Quatrone, at the time of the complaints, was with the Family Division of the Bergen Vicinage. She now works in the civil division in the Essex Vicinage.
According to the complaint, Maria DeLeon was told by the judge in September 2015 to complete a homework assignment given to her son, a high school senior. In an email, Gross-Quatrone asked DeLeon for an update on the assignment and asked if she had ordered a book that was needed to complete the task.
DeLeon responded that she had ordered the book and would have a draft for her son to look at the next day. The complaint also states that Gross-Quatrone also directed DeLeon to check on jewelry orders, car rentals and vacation itineraries, check on her Macy's credit card, and send bills to clients from her prior private law practice.
The committee said that by having DeLeon work on the homework during work hours and using judiciary equipment, Gross-Quatrone "demonstrated an inability to conform her conduct to the high standards expected of judges."
The complaint also claims Gross-Quatrone made a new law clerk make up three days worth of work in August 2015, before her official start date, and also make up time that she spent at a mandatory training session for Family Division law clerks.
Gross-Quatrone also allegedly lied about recording a meeting about the complaint in December 2015, after her request to have the meeting held in a courtroom equipped with the CourtSmart recording system was rejected.
The clerk was reassigned to another judge in December 2015.
Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com.
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